Scissor lifts are routinely used in many industrial facilities. Unfortunately, if this equipment is not operated in the correct manner, it can result in people being injured. Read on to find out how to use a scissor lift safely.
Inspect the scissor lift before using it
One of the most effective ways to prevent scissor lift-related injuries is to ensure that the equipment is thoroughly inspected prior to being used. This will allow the person performing the inspection to detect and repair faults before these faults put the operator or other employees at the facility at risk of injury.
For example, it is quite common for the bolts and nuts which secure the scissor lift's guardrail to the platform to loosen over time. If a person carries out a pre-inspection of the equipment, they will be able to tighten the loosened components.
However, in this scenario, if the equipment were not inspected before it was used and an employee decided to lean against the guardrail whilst standing on the elevated platform, the rail could collapse and they would fall to the ground and probably sustain a severe back or head injury.
As such, pre-inspections are crucial. During the inspection process, the equipment's tyres should be checked for punctures, metal components should be checked for signs of corrosion and all accessible screws, nuts and bolts should be checked to ensure that they are securely fastened.
Don't move the equipment when the lift is fully extended
One of the main things that makes a scissor lift so useful is that its height is adjustable; the platform can be positioned so that it is anywhere from three to fifty metres off the ground.
However, it is important to note that it is generally not considered safe to move a scissor lift whilst its platform is fully extended; this is because, when the equipment is in this position, it's centre of gravity is higher.
This means that there is a greater chance that the lift will be thrown off balance if it is driven over a pothole or an object on the ground.
If a scissor lift topples over when its platform is fully extended, the consequences could be devastating. The person standing on the platform would almost certainly be seriously injured as a result of falling from a great height, and anyone in the vicinity of the equipment at the time of the incident could be fatally crushed if the equipment lands on top of them.